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december 2006 articles

saturday 17th december

This article comes to you from the UK!

CJ overlooks Wanaka from the top of Mt.Iron...With the last few days of hot weather, CJ & I made the most of the time left getting out and enjoying the Wanaka countryside.

Travelling on foot slowed the pace, but gave us a sense of real immersion in the environment.

In the Mt.Aspiring National Park, past Treble Cone skifield, CJ & I made a short trek off the Mt.Aspiring base hut track, leading to the foot of the Rob Roy glacier - a magnificent overhanging mass of permanent ice best viewed from the valley floor.

Suspension bridge over chasm at the start of the the Mt.Appiring track Mt.Aspiring access track Dom standing under the largest loose overhanging rock he could find... Journeys end - the Rob Roy glacier.

We said goodbye to our housemates James, Sheryl, Johnnie and Ru before leaving Wanaka for good on the November 24th - our friend Sandy gave us a lift to Queenstown to spend our final night having dinner with Boozy and his girlfriend Chrissie, before picking up our camper van for the journey back up to Christchurch...

During my trip to NZ in 1998 I had discovered a hidden waterfall, which I recollected was one of the most beautiful highlights of my trip. I was determined to locate it and share it with CJ, and with a bit of help from Boozy and Brendan I was able to find it again.

The sacred maori waterfall at Haka Pa CJ giving a sense of scale to the 130ft-high Haka Pa waterfall Reconstructed maori huts at the Waterfall Park

Haka Pa Maori village and sacred waterfall are located on the edge of Lake Hayes near Arrowtown, now preserved by the Dept of Conservation as "Waterfall Park". An amazing location, not another soul there either in 1998 or during this visit bar peacocks and ducks - probably the most peaceful place I have ever been to, I was blown away to find that it was almost unchanged...

The view across Lake Tekapo to Aoraki - Mt.CookJourneying up through Wanaka, we trod familiar ground through the Lindis Pass, then a brief stop in Omaruma with our Lupin fields in full bloom again. Passing by Pukaki dam and on to Lake Tekapo gave stunning views across the blue water to Mt.Cook, highest mountain in New Zealand, known as Aoraki in Maori...

Taking the long way to Christchurch via the Inland Scenic Route, we spent the night in the camper van - very remeniscent of sleeping in a tent, but without the insect bites - before making our way past raindeer and ostrich farms next day, past Mt.Somers, Mt.Hutt and Methven, Rakaia Bridge and on to Christchurch.

The inland scenic route starts here! Parked up in Peel Forest for the night Inquisitive raindeer peering out from their field near Mt.Somers We returned to the historic Rakaia Gorge bridge, a stopping point last year

Staying in Christchurch with friends Petra and Tony for the night, our next day was our flight out; the start of a 48hour journey home, made comprehensively painful by officious border control in LAX airport, armpit of the world...

I have made contact with the Flipside Streetboard team, and returned to find tour partner Andy Garrett our new team member - bringing the Flipside Tour round full circle! A sick start to '07...

So now we're home I'll see you all soon - I'm looking forward to busting out moves with the UK crew, so watch this space and a Merry Christmas to you all..!

newsflash!

Wanaka '06 movie out now!

Thrill to the crazy adventures of the boys! Footage from Wanaka, Cardrona, Snowpark and Benmore Dam across the season...

Save the Wanaka '06 movie download to desktop - 587Mb! Overnight download...!